OT Lucas Niang, Texas Christian

6’7” – 328 lbs.

Appeared in twelve games as a freshman, then started eight of twelve played as a sophomore. Was the team’s starting right tackle for all thirteen games as a junior. Very well-built for a pro tackle; tall and long-limbed with excellent bulk and weight distribution. Capable of physically overwhelming opponents in a phone booth on run snaps. Was asked to execute both inline and zone concepts in college. Demonstrates a strong grip and keeps his legs churning after engaging to generate push and clear big holes for his running backs. Understands positioning and has the short-area quickness and power to seal off defenders from the hole. Good finisher, both in terms of his capacity for it and his temperament. Was also regularly asked to shuffle toward the left side of the line and secure blocks in the hole; relatively quick on his feet given his size and has demonstrated the capability to cross the line and secure blocks, although he can get caught up in congestion. Overall balance and pad level can a little bit to be desired; was able to rely on his natural power and grip strength at the college level but could stand to clean up his technique. More impressive in the run game than as a pass protector, but his combination of size, length, and quick feet should allow him to stay on the outside. Was able to cover lots of ground and keep opponents in front of him at the college level, but ability to maintain his kickslide technique erodes against faster rushers. More comfortable when he’s cutting off inside moves or dealing with straightforward power approaches. Generally does a good job of anchoring against bull-rushers, even when off-base, and gets consistent extension with his arms; didn’t see him get completely overwhelmed but anchor dropped late on a few occasions. Keeps his back straight into contact. Awareness of the defense appears a little bit lacking; needs to be more consistent with his recognition and decision-making. Has some technical shortcomings and isn’t ready to protect the edge against pro pass rushers right now, but is a massive road-grader who does a great job of moving opponents in the run game, with the type of nastiness that will endear him to offensive line coaches looking for a project to work on. May need to make it at tackle because he may be too tall to slide inside to guard.

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